England fast bowler Jofra Archer has been ruled out of the three-match Twenty20 International series against South Africa starting next month with an elbow injury, the England and Wales Cricket Board announced on Wednesday.
Sussex quick Archer headed back to Britain on Tuesday in a bid to regain full fitness after a sore right elbow saw him miss the final three Tests of England’s 3-1 series win over the Proteas.
The injury has raised doubts over the 24-year-old World Cup winner’s availability for England’s Test tour of Sri Lanka in March.
Archer played just one Test in South Africa, with his five-wicket haul at Centurion unable to prevent a Proteas win by 107 runs in the series opener before England bounced back.
He will be replaced for the T20s by Lancashire paceman Saqib Mahmood, who was already a member of a separate squad for the upcoming One-day International series.
England had long planned to rest Archer, together with fellow World Cup winners Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes and Mark Wood, from the three-match ODI series in South Africa starting at Cape Town on Feb 4.
The Newlands match is set to be England’s first ODI since they beat New Zealand in a thrilling Super Over final at Lord’s last year to clinch a maiden men’s World Cup title.